Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Pakistan spinner Shadab Khan is backing talented youngsters Haider Ali and Zeeshan Malik to shine in the upcoming National T20 Cup.
Shadab will be captaining Northern, who are the defending champions, in the first leg of the tournament in Multan.
Haider, 19, recently made his international debut in the third T20 International against England, where he smashed a 33-ball 54, which included five boundaries and two sixes, to lead Pakistan to a five-run win.
As for Zeeshan, the 23-year-old has featured in seven T20 matches and scored 158 runs, which includes a career-best score of 57, at an average of 22.57 and a strike-rate of 98.75.
“Leading Northern in the Multan-leg is a big opportunity for me, which I am aiming to grab with both hands,” Shadab was quoted as saying by the Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) website. “We are the title defenders and our team and the combination is pretty much the same as the last year. The boys are preparing hard and are looking in good shape despite returning to cricket after some time, which makes me confident that we will be able to defend our title.
“Two youngsters I am looking forward to making a mark in this tournament are Zeeshan Malik, who played with me at the U19 level, and Haider Ali, who could not play last year but is all set to play a vital role in our team this season.”
The National T20 Cup will be held from September 30 to October 18.
Northern will kick off their title defence against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on September 30.